June 12 of Every year is observed as the World Day Against Child Labour which was launched by the International Labour Organization (ILO) in 2002 to focus on the global extent of child labour and the steps to be taken to eliminate it.
The theme of 2020 World Day against Child Labour is “COVID-19: Protect children from child labour, now more than ever”.
i.Due to COVID-19 pandemic 2020 World Day will be conducted as a virtual campaign organised jointly by Global March Against Child Labour and International Partnership for cooperation on Child Labour in Agriculture(IPCCLA) to focus on the impacts of pandemic on children.
ii.The General Assembly adopted the resolution to declare 2021 as the International Year for the Elimination of Child Labour.
To unite the governments, employers, organizations, civil society and general public to understand the dangers faced by these child laborers and to help them.
What is child labour?
i.Child labours that are to eliminated includes, slavery or practices similar to slavery, illicit activities like drug trafficking and prostitution and pornography, employing children below minimum legal age, forced or debt bondage labour, works exposed to hazardous or illnesses.
ii.Any form of employment that contributes to the development of the child and does not interfere in their schooling are considered as positive employment.
Indian Government Initiatives on World Day against Child Labour:
On the World Day against Child Labour, Ministry of Labour and Employment (MoLE) and the V.V. Giri National Labour Institute (VVGNLI) in collaboration with the International Labour Organization (ILO), New Delhi organized a National Stakeholder Webinar on “COVID-19: Protect Children From Child Labour, Now More Than Ever”. This World Day against Child Labour in 2020 focuses on the impact of COVID-19 crisis on child labour.
Works to achieve elimination of child labour:
The ILO’s International Programme on Elimination of Child Labour(IPEC) works are guided by the ILO’s Minimum age convection No.138 and the Worst Forms of Child Labour convention No. 182.
- Convection advises to raise the minimum age as on or above 15 years old for employment after considering the physical and mental development and also to support completion of compulsory schooling.
- Young people under the age of 18year should not be employed for works that are likely to affect their health, safety or morals.
COVID-19 and Child labour: A Time of Crisis, a Time to Act:
i.The joint paper of ILO and United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) shows seeking the path of progress of eradication of child labours during the pandemic.
ii.The Covid-19 crisis forces children into child labour. It is estimated that more than 152 million children are working as child labourers in which more than 72 million are in hazardous works.
iii.The ILO and UNICEF are developing a simulation model to assess the impacts of COVID-19 on child labours all around the world.
Director General– Guy Ryder
Headquarters– Geneva, Switzerland